BBC News/'Trust Me I'm a Doctor"

I've just been sent this interesting link:

bbc.co.uk/news/health-38895877

"So if it's so straightforward, why are there so many forums full of dissatisfied patients? Why do we at Trust Me get so many emails about this subject?

One of the issues with the blood tests is that there are no standard international reference ranges. In the UK, for example, we set the bar rather higher than many other countries. Certainly Dr Toft thinks that current UK guidelines are sometimes interpreted too rigidly."

MIchael Mosely's 'Trust Me I'm a Doctor' - tonight on BBC2 - 8.00 pm.

12 Replies

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  • Hi Polaris have also seen this news link this morning, am looking forward to seeing the TV programme tonight, anything that gets the message out about how we are not getting the right treatment and meds is a good thing.hopfully GPS and endocrinologist will be watching and take note.

  • Hi Raventhorpe - yes, it would be really great if GPs and endocrinologists watch and take note but, somehow, I'm afraid they will still be reluctant to prescribe outside the lab range, let alone try T3.

    Must try to remember to watch 😆

  • Extract from BBC website .....should be interesting viewing.

    One of the issues with the blood tests is that there are no standard international reference ranges. In the UK, for example, we set the bar rather higher than many other countries. Certainly Dr Toft thinks that current UK guidelines are sometimes interpreted too rigidly.

    "If the T4 is right down at the lower limit of normal," he says, "and the TSH is at the upper limit of normal, then that is suspicious. It doesn't often arouse suspicion in GPs, but it should."

    He is also concerned that when a GP does diagnose an underactive thyroid, then patients are almost always prescribed a synthetic version of T4.

    This works most of the time but in some cases the symptoms don't improve. This might be because with some patients the problem is not an underactive thyroid, but the fact that they can't convert enough T4 into the active hormone T3.

    One way round this is to take T3 hormone in tablet form, but here price is a problem.

    "The cost of T3 has escalated incredibly," says Dr Toft. "It's now about £300 for two months' supply of T3, whereas it costs pennies to make."

  • But he doesn't mention that this price is local to the UK and not world-wide.

  • And could be side-stepped if the procurement processes allowed for that.

    (Not that many of us really understand the fine detail sufficiently!)

  • and dependent on dose and supplier.....EU licensed Sanofi Aventis is much cheaper and available on named patient basis through IDIS accounts on NHS .......just found Sanofi make dioralyte too 😉

  • No mention of observing and listening to the patient then ?? As Dr Chris Steele once mentioned about his training - listen to your patient closely and they will tell you what is wrong ......

  • 👍 Absolutely Marz

  • Hi Marz, the days of listening to patient and then acting are long gone... it's more like a battlefield nowadays, in my and some friends's experience anyway!

  • GPs have ignord my comments for over 40 years and l am far from pleased. Now had a strop with doc and just seen young Endo Consultant who says l have low Cortisol - this brings down T4 and ups TSH. More Tests. So far Labs refused 2x to do T3 which was requested. Then what may l expect?

  • I agree Bluecat - it's infuriating and negligent that they won't do the full range of tests to help find solutions to poor health. In my experience, they'd much rather ply you with PPIs, betablockers, etc., which only make things worse by depleting B12.

  • And fill the drug company coffers whilst filling us with rotten chemicals that mostly do little good!

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